The chairman of the Supreme Council of Magistracy (CSM) , Marius Tudose has stated, on Thursday, that the CSM plenum has decided to notify the European Parliament (EP) regarding the infringement of judiciary independence by Maria Grapini so that such statements in the EP do not continue to take place.
The plenum of the Superior Council of Magistracy (CSM) has admitted on Thursday as founded the self-notified motion to defend the independence of the judiciary, as well as the request formulated by the National Anti-corruption Directorate (DNA), deciding that the statements of MEP Maria Grapini regarding the ICA case, made during her intervention in the European Parliament in Strasbourg, November 2014, are of a nature that infringes the independence of the judiciary.
“Furthermore, the Plenum of the Council has decided to transmit the adopted decision to the European Parliament in Strasbourg,” said a release of the CSM remitted to Agerpres.
According to the decision of the Council, through the distorted presentation of the circumstances of the case and use of claims on the existence of a political trial in the plenary session of the European Council blame was placed in the public sphere on the entire magistracy corps, thus infringing the principle of separation and balance of powers, and resulted in a diminished trust of the citizens in the judiciary system, implicitly diminishing the prestige of judges and prosecutors and infringing their independence.
“The claims made by MEP Maria Grapini in the sense that the judiciary is influence by the political factor undermines the court authority and infringes the independence of the judiciary system, more so due to the fact that the statements were made by a dignitary representing the Romanian state within a European institution of the highest level. Through her statements, Mrs. Maria Grapini has exceeded the admissible limits of political discourse and freedom of speech, as they are protected by the provisions of art. 10 of the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedom,” the release also shows.
According to art. 1 and 30 of Law no. 317/2004, the Superior Council of Magistracy is the guarantor of the independence of the judiciary and has the obligation to self-notify in order to defend judges and prosecutors against any act that may affect their independence or impartiality, or may create suspicions regarding the aforementioned qualities
Prosecutor General: Not enough tough measures to counteract attacks on independence of judiciary
Romania’s Prosecutor-General Tiberiu Nitu has stated on Thursday that he does not believe there are sufficiently tough measures in order to counteract attacks on the independence of the judiciary.
Asked what he believes of the Supreme Council of Magistrates’ (CSM) decision to notify the European Parliament in the case of the statements made by Maria Grapini and if there is need in the future for tougher measures to defend the independence of the judiciary, Nitu stated: “I don’t believe there are sufficiently tough measures to counteract or prevent such attacks. The measure is good. As I said on another occasion too, we must find other efficient instruments. (…) I think such a measure – not tough, but efficient – goes beyond notifying the EP of such a decision of the plenum, why not make a partnership between the Council and televisions and radio stations so that they publish such a decision. That means that for 30 days all TV and radio channels should present for 15 seconds the CSM decision. That would be an idea too. Why not?”.
He explained that currently such instruments are being sought, but for the moment the only solution would be this form of publicity for the decision of the CSM in the domain.